Sorry Warren Buffett, Climate-Change Focused Church of England Money Keeps Berkshire Hathaway on Restriction

Posted on 12/19/2020

Twelve companies made changes to stay off the Church of England’s restricted list. The Church of England National Investing Bodies (NIBs) have been active for many years in fighting climate change and are committed to reducing the carbon footprint of our investment portfolios to net zero by 2050. In 2018, the Church of England Synod called for the NIBs to divest from fossil fuel companies not aligned with the goals of the Paris Agreement by 2023, leading to the NIBs setting 2020 and 2023 investment hurdles.

The Church Commissioners for England, the Church of England Pensions Board and CBF Church of England Funds, which comprise the NIBs, will divest the restricted companies in which they have holdings as soon as possible. This is the first time the NIBs have restricted companies that fall short of specific carbon emission standards.

Following that engagement, nine companies were restricted, two were put under review and 10 improved their disclosure, governance or strategy sufficiently to avoid restrictions this year.

The restricted companies are:

American Electric Power (United States)
Anhui Conch Cement (China)
Berkshire Hathaway (United States)
FirstEnergy (United States)
Formosa Petrochemical (Taiwan)
Korea Electric Power Corp (Korea)
Oil & Natural Gas (India)
PPL (United States)
SAIC Motor (China)

The total value of the NIBs’ holdings in these companies was £32.23 million on October 21, 2020.

The companies under review for 12 months have demonstrated positive engagement and are being given more time to make changes. The companies are:

PGE (Poland)
Reliance Industries (India)

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